11 d’octubre 2010

China Against Death Penalty (translation)

China is the country with more executions, between 70% and 90% of the world's total. Approximate numbers, because Chinese Justice doesn't provide them. Moreover, public opinion mostly supports it. With this background, the first Chinese NGO against death penalty has just been founded by scholars and lawyers like Teng Biao, who today was still busy getting things ready for the NGO's new office.

TENG BIAO, lawyer
"Most of Chinese people still have quite a traditional opinion. They believe a society without capital penalty is unthinkable, that it would lead to chaos. But they don't know in the world only a few number of countries still have it, and the ones that keep it don't use so frequently".

In 2005, China reviewed the procedures for its rulling. Since then, the Supreme Court has the last word for cases that before were decided at provincial level. An improvement that Teng Biao says is not enough.

Some years ago, TV3 followed him to Leping, where four men were convicted of assassination. First on the death row and now with a suspended sentence, which equals life sentence. A case without conclusive evidences and the suspicion that confessions were obtained under torture. In other cases, already executed people happened to be the wrong ones.

This group of scholars has announced the creation of their NGO on the International Day Against Death Penalty and in a very sensitive time for everything related to human rights in China, since last Friday Liu Xiaobo was given the Nobel Peace Prize.